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Feature Slides

  • PubMed ® for Trainers

    Do you train others to use PubMed? If so, join us for PubMed for Trainers, a hybrid class with 3 online sessions and 1 in-person session (eligible for 15 MLA CE credits). The class is an in-depth look at PubMed and a chance to share training ideas with your fellow participants.

    PubMed ® for Trainers

    PubMed ® for Trainers Picture
  • Fundamentals of Bioinformatics

    The "Fundamentals of Bioinformatics and Searching" course provides basic knowledge and skills for librarians interested in helping patrons use online molecular databases and tools from the NCBI.

    Fundamentals of Bioinformatics

    Fundamentals of Bioinformatics Picture
  • TOXNET® and Beyond

    This course is designed to convey the basics of searching the NLM's TOXNET®, a Web-based system of databases in the areas of toxicology, environmental health, and related fields.

    TOXNET® and Beyond

    TOXNET® and Beyond Picture
  • Teaching with Technology

    Learn how to take advantage of online tools to offer distance education classes and enhance face to face classes! Join us for this "asynchronous" (on your own time) class. The class is taught over 5 weeks and is eligible for 8 MLA CE credits.

    Teaching with Technology

    Teaching with Technology Picture
  • PubMed® for Librarians

    PubMed for Librarians is made up of five one-hour segments. These five segments will be presented via Adobe Connect and recorded for archival access. Each segment is meant to be a stand-alone module designed for each user to determine how many and in what sequence they attend.

    PubMed® for Librarians

    PubMed® for Librarians Picture

Can You See Me Now? OR The 800 Pound Gorilla

Don’t you see it? It’s right there. Have you ever asked (or been asked) that question? Even when something is right in front of us, we may not see it. I call it the bird watching syndrome. I love birds and have been an avid backyard bird watcher for years. I thought I knew my birds (cardinals, blue jays, robins, the usual suspects) until I went on my first bird watching expedition. When my fellow birders said, see the cedar waxwings in the tree over there? Uhhh…no, I don’t see them.

My favorite example of this is from research done by two psychologists. I’ve used their video as an ice breaker and it is lots of fun. You can see the YouTube video (1 min 21 seconds) here or view it below. In addition to a few laughs, one of the things the video demonstrates is that even though something is right in front of us, we may not see it.

How can we use this information in training? Whether the training is in-person or via the Internet keep in mind that we (people) don’t see the world the same as each other. Consider using visual and verbal cues to draw people’s attention to a particular place on a web page, and then wait a moment…linger long enough to make sure that people are with you. The pace may feel a little slow to the trainer (and to those students who are familiar with what you are demonstrating), but it should help keep everyone together.

Taste of Twitter

NN/LM NTC Twitter

 

The NTC uses Twitter to share news about our upcoming classes, as well as teaching and training tips, NLM news and tutorials, and other items we think you might find interesting or useful. In case you don’t use Twitter, we’ve collected some of our most popular Tweets and links from the past month to share with you here.

If you are on Twitter, take a minute to follow us @nnlmntc

Look at Me!

In lieu of demanding that people look at your online course, here are a few things to consider when you’re trying to create an attention getting online course.

1.Our brain likes shiny and new. Display content in a new way or use off-beat examples that are more likely to be remembered.

2.People make snap judgments. Think of your online course as your living room. Arrange the components in an appealing way so people want to stay.

3. I’ve mentioned it before in this blog. People read a computer screen differently than they read a book. People tend to scan the screen from top left to bottom right; they also tend not to read an entire article online. When designing a course page, place important elements in the upper left of a page and arrange the text in small bite-sized chunks.

4.The brain remembers better when items are placed in contrast to other items. So, a larger font or an important piece of information can be bolded or in a different color. If I gave you a list of terms, which do you think you might remember later? car, bus, hybrid car, electric car.

Read the original article at: http://goo.gl/BIwuzJ

Should you flip it?

If you’re at all connected to teaching and training, you’ve likely been hearing more and more about the flipped classroom. The basic idea of the flipped class is to switch how students and teachers spend their time. In the flipped model, teachers prepare and record videos or lectures for the students to view on their own time and then class time is used for solving problems together or other active and collaborative exercises.

Group at computer

If you’re considering the pros and cons of flipping some of your classes, Teach Thought has a short article that you might find helpful. Although it’s geared more toward the elementary and secondary school classrooms, there are still valuable points to consider. For example, the flipped model gives students more control (an important principle of adult learning, as well) and allows them to easily repeat lessons if needed. On the other hand, it can require significant work on the front end to prepare for the class.

The good news is that a flipped classroom doesn’t have to be all or none. You can deploy elements of the flipped classroom without completely changing your course or class. The NTC has experimented with employing elements of a flipped classroom in some of our classes. For example, we might assign a video to watch and then use more of our time together for practice exercises or addressing difficult questions. While we have by no means entirely flipped the classes, we have received some positive feedback on having more time for doing hands-on work together.

Let us know if and how you’ve employed elements of a flipped teaching by commenting on Facebook or Twitter.

Meet the NTC Staff: Sarah Dickey

Hello, my name is Sarah Dickey, and I’m the Program Manager for the National Library of Medicine Training Center. I joined the NTC in June 2013. As the program manager I handle the day to day activities of the NTC including course registration, behind the scenes course administration, troubleshooting, and general administrative duties. If you ever have questions or concerns, you know who to call!

In 2009 I graduated Summa Cum Laude from Utah Valley University with my BS degree in Digital Media and an emphasis in project management and web development. After college I worked as a substitute teacher, printing services technician, elementary school media assistant, and most recently administrative assistant at a local engineering firm. I am so happy to have made my way to the University of Utah working with the fine people of the Eccles Health Sciences Library.

I was married in 2010, and live in the suburbs of Salt Lake City with my husband and twelve year old step daughter. My husband and I are expecting our first child together (a boy) in March! In my free time I love hiking, exercising, touring the national parks, (we have five here in Utah), spending time with my family and crafting. I have lived in Utah my entire life and I can’t really imagine living anywhere else.

IMG_0918

This is me snowmobiling in Yellowstone last January, (it was -20 F!)

Online Videos on the Rise

In October, the Pew Internet & American Life Project posted a new report on the use of online video. You can read the full report here or, conveniently, you can watch an online video summary on the rise of online video:

Here are a few highlights:

  • 78% of American adult internet users watch or download online videos
  • The most widely viewed video types are comedy, education, and how-to videos
  • The percent of American adult internet users who upload or post videos online has doubled in the past 4 years from 14% in 2009 to 31% today

Do you use videos in teaching and training, or are you planning to? Many users expect to find answers precisely when they need them, and videos can be a good way to address these just-in-time needs. Knowing that education and how-to videos are among the top three types of videos viewed, your efforts to create videos will likely be appreciated by your users. You could use videos to address frequently asked questions, take virtual visitors a tour of the library, or provide tutorials on how to accomplish common tasks.

A few tips to consider in making videos:

  • Keep it short
  • Make them shareable and post them on your social media channels
  • Be sure they are easy to find
  • Ensure that they work on mobile devices
  • Make them accessible

 

 

 

Meet the NTC Staff: Rebecca Brown

Hi. My name is Rebecca Brown and I work for the National Library of Medicine Training Center. My full title is: Trainer/Curriculum and Content Specialist.

 Rebecca Brown

I received my MLS from Texas Woman’s University. Before grad school, I held several non-professional jobs in public libraries in the Kansas City area. During grad school I worked in the Copyright and Document Delivery Department of the Archie Dykes Health Sciences Library at the University of Kansas Medical Center.

After graduation, my first professional job as a librarian was with the National Network of Libraries of Medicine – MidContinental Region (NNLM-MCR) as the Kansas and Technology Liaison. I held that position for almost 5years.

I love teaching and have wanted to be a database trainer for years. I teach PubMed and the TOXNET suite of databases that cover toxicology, hazardous chemicals, environmental health, and toxic releases.

I hope to see you online or at your library!

PubMed Relevance Sort

On October 22, 2013 PubMed implemented the Sort by Relevance feature. Let us know what you think.

Are You a Hyperbolic Discounter?

Julie Dirksen, an Instructional Designer, recently wrote a blog post for the e-Learning Leadership blog called: An e-Learning Challenge – Why Should You Care Right Now? She explains hyperbolic discounting this way: “Behavioral economists study the concept of hyperbolic discounting, which is our tendency to prefer rewards that come sooner over rewards that happen later, even when the later reward is somewhat larger.”

How would you answer these 3 questions:
1. Would you rather have $10 today, or $11 tomorrow?
2. Would you rather have $10 today, or $11 in a year?
3. Would you rather have $10 today, or $1000 in a year?

According to Dirksen, responses are generally the same. Half the people are split on question #1, everybody wants the money from question #2 today, and everyone is willing to wait for the money in question #3.

What are the implications for training?
Julie’s personal example hits the nail on the head. She attended a training event about Health Savings Accounts (HSA). HSAs let you set aside pre-tax dollars from your paycheck to use for allowable medical expenses. She said it was the most boring training she had ever attended (possible hyperbole). She described the training as one where they told her everything she needed to know so that she could use her HSA at some point in the future…if she had the need. How fulfilling is that? Not very.

Now, think about what the 3 questions told us about human behavior (remember the $1000) and use that to design a scenario-based training where you build in some urgency, a reason to care. Julie’s suggestion for beefing up the HSA training was to give people the HSA guidelines, give them scenarios and ask them to figure out if they can use their HSA money. I’ve got to figure out if these medical expenses are qualified and use the money before the end of the year (sense of urgency)! This gives the learner a reason to pay attention and a reason to use the information. Sounds like a win-win situation. Now, I’ll take that $1000 today please.

You can read the entire post here: http://ow.ly/qVEgi 

Bank of Examples

When you’re teaching a class, do you use example searches that you know work well to demonstrate a concept or topic, or do you incorporate participant suggestions as you go?

I like to start with one or two examples that I know can demonstrate the concept, then use a student search topic. It’s important to me to have a clear example first, but demonstrating with student topics can make the class feel more relevant and authentic. Even so, students might be hesitant to share their questions or might not have a current assignment, so it’s important to have a few searches to demonstrate.

Sometimes coming up with good examples can be the most challenging part of designing a class. Because I don’t want to spend time devising new examples each time, I’ve started keeping an example bank. My example bank is really just a spreadsheet with four columns. The columns are labeled: objective, audience, example, and notes. In the objective column I list the objective I’m trying to achieve. In the audience column, I list the audiences with whom I’d use the example. I try to come up with relevant examples for different audiences, such as nurses, pharmacists, or medical students. Even if the objective is the same, I’ll use a new row for each audience so I can sort the table by audience. In the example column, I list the specific example I’ll use. Finally, in the notes column, I write anything that I want to point out about this example.

Now, when I’m piecing together a class, I have a bank of examples that I can sort by objective or audience and quickly pull into my class outline. I make sure to try the sample search before each class, just to be sure it still works to demonstrate the concept.

Do you have an example bank? What else would you add to the table I’ve described?